The U.S. Is Providing Air Cover for Ethnic Cleansing in Iraq

464763530_iraq2michaelweissBy Michael Weiss and Michael Pregent:

American warplanes have begun bombing the Islamic State-held Iraqi city of Tikrit in order to bail out the embattled, stalled ground campaign launched by Baghdad and Tehran two weeks ago. This operation, billed as “revenge” for the Islamic State (IS) massacre of 1,700 Shiite soldiers at Camp Speicher last June, was launched without any consultation with Washington and was meant to be over by now, three weeks after much triumphalism by the Iraqi government about how swiftly the terrorist redoubt in Saddam Hussein’s hometown was going to be retaken.

U.S. officials have variously estimated that either 23,000 or 30,000 “pro-government” forces were marshaled for the job, of which only slender minority were actual Iraqi soldiers. The rest consisted of a consortium of Shiite militia groups operating under the banner of Hashd al-Shaabi, or the Population Mobilization Units (PMU), which was assembled in answer to afatwah issued by Iraq’s revered Shiite cleric Ayatollah Ali Sistani in June 2014 following ISIS’s blitzkrieg through northern Iraq. To give you a sense of the force disparity, the PMUs are said to command 120,000 fighters, whereas the Iraqi Army has only got 48,000 troops.

Against this impressive array of paramilitaries, a mere 400 to 1,000 IS fighters have managed to hold their ground in Tikrit, driving major combat operations to a halt. This is because the Islamic State is resorting to exactly the kinds of lethal insurgency tactics which al Qaeda in Iraq (its earlier incarnation) used against the more professional and better-equipped U.S. forces. BuzzFeed’s Mike Giglio has ably documented the extent to which IS has relied upon improvised explosive devices, and just how sophisticated these have been. Even skilled explosive ordnance disposal teams — many guided by Iranian specialists — are being ripped apart by what one termed the “hidden enemy” in Tikrit.

Because IS controls hundreds of square miles of terrain in Iraq, it has an unknown number of bomb manufacturing plants, and because it knows the terrain so well, it’s been able to booby-trap houses and roads. Even Shiite prayer beads left lying on the ground are thought to be rigged to explosives. One Kurdish official told Giglio that the Kurdish Peshmerga fighters alone have “defused or detonated more than 6,000 IEDs along their 650-mile front with ISIS since the war began in August.”

The toll this has taken on the militias is extraordinary. Cemetery workers in Najaf told the Washington Post that as many as 60 corpses are arriving per day. Former Defense Intelligence Agency officer Derek Harvey tweeted last week that an Iraqi Shiite source told him the number of militia war dead from the Tikrit offensive so far may be as high as 6,000. So the militias’ triumphalism, much of it no doubt manufactured by Iran’s propaganda machine, proved to be misplaced. Jeffrey White, another former DIA analyst now at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, notes “there’s a failure of will on the part of the militias and government forces. They just didn’t have the sufficient desire and determination to take the fight forward given the casualties they’ve been sustaining.”

So now, the same Iraqi government which earlier dismissed the need for U.S. airpower had to put in an eleventh-hour request for it, lest an easy victory descend into embarrassing folly. But the past few months ought to have shown that even indirectly relying on Iranian agents to conduct a credible ground war against Sunni extremists was always a lousy idea for three reasons: those agents hate the United States and have threatened to attack its interest in Iraq; they’re guilty of IS-style atrocities themselves; and they’re lousy at fighting an entrenched jihadist insurgency.

Chairman of the Joint Chiefs Martin Dempsey told Congress on March 3: “What we are watching carefully is whether the militias — they call themselves the popular mobilization forces — whether when they recapture lost territory, whether they engage in acts of retribution and ethnic cleansing.” He needn’t watch any longer. They are engaging in exactly that.

The crimes of war

On March 10, the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) released a comprehensive study of human rights violations committed by both IS and pro-Iraqi forces. The Islamic State, OHCHR concluded, has likely committed genocide against the Yazidis, a ethno-religious minority in Iraq, in a catalogue of war crimes and crimes against humanity that include gang-rape and sexual slavery. But OHCHR’s language is equally unambiguous in condemning the other side on the battlefield: “Throughout the summer of 2014,” the report noted, “[PMUs], other volunteers and [Shiite] militia moved from their southern heartlands towards [Islamic State]-controlled areas in central and northern Iraq. While their military campaign against the group gained ground, the militias seem to operate with total impunity, leaving a trail of death and destruction in their wake.” [Italics added.]

Sunni villages in Amerli and Suleiman Bek, in the Salah ad-Din province, have been looted or destroyed by militiamen operating on the specious assumption that all inhabitants once ruled by IS must be IS sympathizers or collaborators. Human Rights Watch has also lately discovered that the “liberation” of Amerli last October — another PMU/Iranian-led endeavor, only this one abetted by U.S. airstrikes in the early stages — was characterized by wide-scale abuses including the looting and burning of homes and business of Sunni residents of villages surrounding Amerli. The apparent aim was ethnic cleansing. Human Rights Watch concluded, from witness accounts, that “building destruction in at least 47 predominantly Sunni villages was methodical and driven by revenge and intended to alter the demographic composition of Iraq’s traditionally diverse provinces of Salah al-Din and Kirkuk.”

Sunnis weren’t the only demographic subjected to collective punishment. A 21-year-old Shiite Turkmen from the Yengija village was “burned with cigarettes and tied to a ceiling fan” by militants of Saraya Tala’a al-Khorasani, another Iran-backed militia. He told Human Rights Watch: “They kept saying, ‘You are ISIS,’ and I kept denying it. They were beating me randomly on my face, head, shoulders using water pipes and the butts of their weapons…. They went to have lunch and then came back and beat us for an hour and half. Later that night they asked me if I was Shia or Sunni. I told them I was Shia Turkoman and they ordered me to prove it by praying the Shia way…. They kept me for nine days.”

This account tracks with a mountain of social media-propagated video and photographic evidence showing that Iraq’s Shiite militias are behaving rather like the Islamic State — beheading and torturing people they assail as quislings, and then exhibiting these atrocities as a means of recruitment. More worrying, a six-month investigation by ABC News has found that U.S.-trained Iraqi Security Force personnel are also guilty of anti-Sunni pogroms, with officers from Iraq’s Special Forces shown in one video accusing an unarmed teenaged boy of being a shooter (a charge the boy denies) before opening fire on him.

Looking the other way

The Obama administration’s counterterrorism-driven policy for the Middle East, and a quietly pursued diplomatic reconciliation with Iran, has resulted in America’s diminishment of grave war crimes committed by Iran’s clients and proxies, and the problem is hardly just confined to Iraq. In Syria, for instance, the National Defense Force, a conglomerate of militias trained and equipped by Iran’s Revolutionary Guards Corps-Quds Force (IRGC) — a U.S.-designated terrorist entity — has been accused by the Syrian Network for Human Rights and the Euro-Mid Observer for Human Rights, of “[burning] at least 81 people to death, including 46 civilians; 18 children, 7 women, and 35 of the armed opposition fighters,” along with other pro-Assad forces. The State Department has offered condolences to Iran’s President Hasan Rouhani on the death of his mother; to date, it has not said a word about the immolation of these Syrians at the hands of a Quds Force-built guerrilla army.

All of which raises the question: Does the United States have a “common interest,” as Secretary of State John Kerry phrased it, with a regime in Tehran whose proxies are currently burning people alive in their houses, playing soccer with severed human heads, and ethnically cleansing and razing whole villages to the ground?

Read more at FP

Why Yemen Matters

by Daniel Pipes
Washington Times
March 28, 2015

The Middle East witnessed something radically new two days ago, when the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia responded to a plea by Yemen’s president and led a 10-country coalition to intervene in the air and on the ground in the country. “Operation Decisive Storm” prompts many reflections:

Saudi and Egypt in alliance: Half a century ago, Riyadh and Cairo were active in a Yemen war, but then they supported opposing sides, respectively the status-quo forces and the revolutionaries. Their now being allies points to continuity in Saudia along with profound changes in Egypt.

Arabic-speakers getting their act together: Through Israel’s early decades, Arabs dreamt of uniting militarily against it but the realities of infighting and rivalries smashed every such hope. Even on the three occasions (1948-49, 1967, 1973) when they did join forces, they did so at cross purposes and ineffectively. How striking, then that finally they should coalesce not against Israel but against Iran. This implicitly points to their understanding that the Islamic Republic of Iran poses a real threat, whereas anti-Zionism amounts to mere indulgence. It also points to panic and the need to take action resulting from a stark American retreat.

Arab leaders have a long history of meeting but not cooperating. From the right: King Hussein of Jordan, Gamal Abdel Nasser of Egypt, Yasir Arafat of the PLO, and Muammar Qaddafi of Libya in September 1970.

Yemen at the center of attention: Yemen played a peripheral role in the Bible, in the rise of Islam, and in modern times; it’s never been the focus of world concern – until suddenly now. Yemen resembles other once-marginal countries – the Koreas, Cuba, the Vietnams, Afghanistan – which out of nowhere became the focus of global concern.

The Middle East cold war went hot: The Iranian and Saudi regimes have headed dueling blocs for about a decade. They did combat as the U.S. and Soviet governments once did – via contending ideologies, espionage, aid, trade, and covert action. On March 26, that cold war went hot, where it’s likely long to remain.

Can the Saudi-led coalition win? Highly unlikely, as these are rookies taking on Iran’s battle-hardened allies in a forbidding terrain.

Islamists dominate: The leaders of both blocs share much: both aspire universally to apply the sacred law of Islam (the Shari’a), both despise infidels, and both turned faith into ideology. Their falling out confirms Islamism as the Middle East’s only game, permitting its proponents the luxury to fight each other.

The Turkey-Qatar-Muslim Brotherhood alliance in decline: A third alliance of Sunni revisionists somewhere between the Shi’i revolutionaries and the Sunni status-quotians has been active during recent years in many countries – Iraq, Syria, Egypt, Libya. But now, in part thanks to diplomacy initiated by the brand-new King Salman of Saudi Arabia, its members are gravitating toward their Sunni co-religionists.

King Salman of Saudi Arabia has done something unprecedented in putting together a military coalition.

Isolated Iran: Yes, a belligerent Tehran now boasts of dominating four Arab capitals (Baghdad, Damascus, Beirut, Sana’a) but that’s also its problem: abrupt Iranian gains have many in the region (including such previously friendly states as Pakistan and Sudan) fearing Iran.

Sidelining the Arab-Israeli conflict: If the Obama administration and European leaders remain obsessed with Palestinians, seeing them as key to the region, regional players have far more urgent priorities. Not only does Israel hardly concern them but the Jewish state serves as a tacit auxiliary of the Saudi-led bloc. Does this change mark a long-term shift in Arab attitudes toward Israel? Probably not; when the Iran crisis fades, expect attention to return to the Palestinians and Israel, as it always does.

American policy in disarray: Middle East hands rightly scoffed in 2009 when Barack Obama and his fellow naïfs expected that by leaving Iraq, smiling at Tehran, and trying harder at Arab-Israeli negotiations they would fix the region, permitting a “pivot” to East Asia. Instead, the incompetents squatting atop the U.S. government cannot keep up with fast-moving, adverse events, many of its own creation (anarchy in Libya, tensions with traditional allies, a more bellicose Iran).

Impact on a deal with Iran: Although Washington has folded on many positions in negotiations with Iran and done the mullah’s regime many favors (for example, not listing it or its Hizbullah ally as terrorist), it drew a line in Yemen, offering the anti-Iran coalition some support. Will Iran’s Supreme Leader Ali Khamene’i now stomp out of the talks? Highly unlikely, for the deal offered him is too sweet to turn down.

American diplomats meet again with their Iranian counterparts to capitulate on yet another difference.

In sum, Salman’s skilled diplomacy and his readiness to use force in Yemen responds to the deadly combination of Arab anarchy, Iranian aggression, and Obama weakness in a way that will shape the region for years.

Mr. Pipes (DanielPipes.org, @DanielPipes) is president of the Middle East Forum. © 2015 by Daniel Pipes. All rights reserved.

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Obama’s Mideast ‘free fall’

Barack Obama faces a slew of Middle East crises that some call the worst in a generation, as new chaos from Yemen to Iraq — along with deteriorating U.S.-Israeli relations — is confounding the president’s efforts to stabilize the region and strike a nuclear deal with Iran.

The meltdown has Obama officials defending their management of a region that some call impossible to control, even as critics say U.S. policies there are partly to blame for the spreading anarchy.

“If there’s one lesson this administration has learned, from President Obama’s 2009 Cairo speech through the Arab Spring, it’s that when it comes to this region, nothing happens in a linear way — and precious little is actually about us, which is a hard reality to accept,” said a senior State Department official.

Not everyone is so forgiving. “We’re in a goddamn free fall here,” said James Jeffrey, who served as Obama’s ambassador to Iraq and was a top national security aide in the George W. Bush White House.

For years, members of the Obama team have grappled with the chaotic aftermath of the Arab Spring. But of late they have been repeatedly caught off-guard, raising new questions about America’s ability to manage the dangerous region.

Obama officials were surprised earlier this month, for instance, when the Iraqi government joined with Iranian-backed militias to mount a sudden offensive aimed at freeing the city of Tikrit from the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant. Nor did they foresee the swift rise of the Iranian-backed rebels who toppled Yemen’s U.S.-friendly government and disrupted a crucial U.S. counterterrorism mission against Al Qaeda there.

Both situations took dramatic new turns this week. The U.S. announced its support for a Saudi-led coalition of 10 Sunni Arab nations that began bombing the Houthis, while Egypt threatened to send ground troops — a move that could initiate the worst intra-Arab war in decades.

Meanwhile, the U.S. launched airstrikes against ISIL in Tikrit after originally insisting it would sit out that offensive. U.S. officials had hoped to avoid coordination with Shiite militias under the direct control of Iranian commanders in the country.

Now the U.S. is in the strange position of fighting ISIL alongside Iran at the same time it backs the Sunni campaign against Iran’s allies in Yemen — even as Secretary of State John Kerry hopes to seal a nuclear deal with Iran in Switzerland within days.

On Thursday, Iran’s foreign minister, who has been meeting with Secretary of State John Kerry in Switzerland to discuss Iran’s nuclear program, demanded an immediate halt to the Yemen incursion.

At the same time, civil war rages on in Syria. On Thursday, Robert Menendez, the ranking Democrat on the Senate Foreign Affairs Committee, sent Obama a letter urging him to respond to charges that the regime of Bashar Assad — a close ally of Tehran — has used chlorine gas against civilians. In late 2013, Obama threatened to punish Assad with airstrikes after his forces deployed nerve gas.

Also in chaos is Libya, home to two dueling governments — and another target of cross-border Arab military action when Egypt and the United Arab Emirates conducted airstrikes against alleged Islamic extremists there in August. That action also reportedly surprised U.S. officials.

It all amounts to a far cry from Obama’s optimistic vision when he came to office suggesting that by withdrawing U.S. troops from Iraq and focusing on Israeli-Palestinian peace he could stabilize, if not completely calm, the long-troubled area.

Instead, Obama looks poised to leave an even more dangerous and unpredictable region than the one he inherited in 2009.

“The mood here is that we really are at a crisis point that is unprecedented in recent memory,” said Suzanne Maloney, a senior fellow in the Middle East policy center at the Brookings Institution, who spoke from the Qatari capital of Doha. “This feels more intense and more complicated” than past moments of turmoil, Maloney added.

Read more at Politico

Do read the article Crash Position linked to in the featured graphic…h/t Sundance

Obama’s Dismal Legacy

president_obama_17968_4302-e1397247634412by Justin O. Smith:

America will point to this juncture in history one day, and it will note that this was the critical moment when the Grand Fool, Barack Obama, and his Court Jester, John Kerry, failed to recognize the greatest threat to America and the world in the 21st century. Ignoring all sound reason and stark warnings from numerous U.S. and world leaders, such as Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s March 4th speech before Congress, they are proceeding with a bad agreement that does not prevent the growth and perfection of a broad Iranian nuclear weapons delivery system, and they are paving a path to nuclear weapons for the Revolutionary Guard and a rogue regime and state-sponsor of terrorism.

Iran’s nuclear weapons program has long been evident. Its heavy water nuclear facility at Arak is one proof, since this type of facility is only good for making weapons grade plutonium. Iran’s high explosive components for implosion-type nuclear weapons are made at Parchin

Parchin has been mentioned numerous times by the U.K., France and Germany in these ongoing negotiations, from which Iran hopes to gain relief from all economic sanctions. However, Iran has refused to allow any further inspection of Parchin, since 2005, and it now says further inspections are out of the question.

Any arms deals most usually demands verification of one’s compliance. And due to Iran’s resistance to allow for proper verification measures, most of America is asking, “Why are we negotiating with Iran at all at this point?”

While Iran cannot be trusted, there is a liar leading the U.S., who wants to side-step the Senate’s advise and consent role, even though in 2013 Obama stated that “the people’s representatives must be invested in what America does abroad.” Look where the U.S. stands now and compare it to Obama’s March 6, 2012 statement: “… My policy is to prevent [Iran] from getting a nuclear weapon, because if they get a nuclear weapon that could trigger an arms race in the region … it could potentially fall into the hands of terrorists.”

Shortly after Netanyahu’s speech in the halls of Congress, Saudi Prince Turki al-Faisal Saud warned, in a BBC interview, that any terms granting Iran nuclear power would result in a massive wide-open arms race across the Middle East. Similar concerns are currently being voiced by Turkey, the United Arab Emirates and many other nations.

Iran is already in flagrant violation of past U.N. Security Council resolutions, and yet they are proceeding in their efforts to develop nuclear weapons and inter-continental ballistic missiles. And contrary to the purpose of dissuading Iran from this course, the U.S. and other nations now seem unwilling to stop Iran from going nuclear, as they concede Iran’s right to retain its current capabilities.

The price-tag on Obama’s dismal legacy is a high one, since Ayatollah Khamenei demands immediate relief from all sanctions. That means more money in Iranian coffers and an increased ability to assist the likes of Hezbollah, the Houthi rebels in Yemen and murderous Shia militia in Iraq. Enabling this terrorist regime to reshape the Middle East through force of arms, slaughtering innocents and nuclear blackmail certainly promises peace will elude the world throughout this century.

Well within their rights, duty and authority to serve and protect the United States, Chairman Ed Royce (R-CA) of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, ranking committee member Eliot Engel (D-NY) and 365 House members sent a bipartisan letter to Obama, dated March 20th, that specified in part: “… Congress must be convinced that [the agreement’s] terms foreclose any pathway to a [nuclear] bomb, and only then will Congress be able to consider permanent sanctions relief … Finally … it is critical that we also consider Iran’s destabilizing role in the region.”

Similarly, just days previous, Senator Tom Cotton (R-Ark) and 46 other Republican senators published an “open letter” to Iran and its leaders. It essentially stated that any agreement with President Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry could be rescinded by any successor and was basically not worth the paper it is written on, without Senate approval.

Nothing has changed in the thirty-five years after Iran took U.S. diplomats hostage for 444 days or after the Marine barracks bombing in Beirut in 1983. As noted by Holocaust survivor and Nobel Peace Laureate Elie Wiesel on February 14, 2015: “The Ayatollah Khamenei has been as clear as his predecessor in declaring his goal __ ‘the annihilation and destruction’ of Israel. He is bent on acquiring the weapons needed to make good on his deadly promise.: And, just weeks ago, as Khamenei rallied his country to endorse the nuclear negotiations, he joined the crowd in their chants of “Death to America,”

During his 39 minute speech before the U.S. Congress, Benjamin Netanyahu told lawmakers and visitors, “This deal won’t be a farewell to arms, it will be a farewell to arms control … a countdown to a potential nuclear nightmare.” At one point, Bibi turned to the 86 year old Holocaust survivor, Elie Wiesel, who sat with Sara Netanyahu in the Congressional gallery, and poignantly continued, “I wish I could promise You, Elie, that the lessons of history have been learned. I can only urge the leaders of the world not to repeat the mistakes of the past.”

Much in the manner that Czechoslovakia was betrayed at the 1938 Munich Conference, Israel is being betrayed by Obama’s executive agreement with Iran, and Israel is now left alone to mount a military operation that can destroy Iran’s nuclear facilities. Israel can accomplish this, just as it did at Osirak in 1981, but a much more thorough job would result from U.S. and European assistance. A pre-emptive strike is the only answer to a nuclear armed Iran that most certainly will bring the world to the brink of destruction.

America is nearing a terrible milestone in its history. It must not refuse to stand against Iran’s naked aggression, just as it initially refused to stand against the Nazis, or history will weigh our nation in the balance and find it wanting. America must recover its moral character and rebuke Obama’s bitter fruit of appeasement, Considerably less danger exists in a preemptive strike on Iran’s nuclear facilities than going forward with a bitter fruit that only promises a dark future filled with exponentially larger conflagrations, massive wars and chaos.

To Stop Iran’s Bomb, Bomb Iran

26Bolton-master675NYT, By John Bolton, March 26, 2015:

FOR years, experts worried that the Middle East would face an uncontrollable nuclear-arms race if Iran ever acquired weapons capability. Given the region’s political, religious and ethnic conflicts, the logic is straightforward.

As in other nuclear proliferation cases like India, Pakistan and North Korea, America and the West were guilty of inattention when they should have been vigilant. But failing to act in the past is no excuse for making the same mistakes now. All presidents enter office facing the cumulative effects of their predecessors’ decisions. But each is responsible for what happens on his watch. President Obama’s approach on Iran has brought a bad situation to the brink of catastrophe.

In theory, comprehensive international sanctions, rigorously enforced and universally adhered to, might have broken the back of Iran’s nuclear program. But the sanctions imposed have not met those criteria. Naturally, Tehran wants to be free of them, but the president’s own director of National Intelligence testified in 2014 that they had not stopped Iran’s progressing its nuclear program. There is now widespread acknowledgment that the rosy 2007 National Intelligence Estimate, which judged that Iran’s weapons program was halted in 2003, was an embarrassment, little more than wishful thinking.

Even absent palpable proof, like a nuclear test, Iran’s steady progress toward nuclear weapons has long been evident. Now the arms race has begun: Neighboring countries are moving forward, driven by fears that Mr. Obama’s diplomacy is fostering a nuclear Iran. Saudi Arabia, keystone of the oil-producing monarchies, has long been expected to move first. No way would the Sunni Saudis allow the Shiite Persians to outpace them in the quest for dominance within Islam and Middle Eastern geopolitical hegemony. Because of reports of early Saudi funding, analysts have long believed that Saudi Arabia has an option to obtain nuclear weapons from Pakistan, allowing it to become a nuclear-weapons state overnight. Egypt and Turkey, both with imperial legacies and modern aspirations, and similarly distrustful of Tehran, would be right behind.

Ironically perhaps, Israel’s nuclear weapons have not triggered an arms race. Other states in the region understood — even if they couldn’t admit it publicly — that Israel’s nukes were intended as a deterrent, not as an offensive measure.

Iran is a different story. Extensive progress in uranium enrichment and plutonium reprocessing reveal its ambitions. Saudi, Egyptian and Turkish interests are complex and conflicting, but faced with Iran’s threat, all have concluded that nuclear weapons are essential.

The former Saudi intelligence chief, Prince Turki al-Faisal, said recently, “whatever comes out of these talks, we will want the same.” He added, “if Iran has the ability to enrich uranium to whatever level, it’s not just Saudi Arabia that’s going to ask for that.” Obviously, the Saudis, Turkey and Egypt will not be issuing news releases trumpeting their intentions. But the evidence is accumulating that they have quickened their pace toward developing weapons.

The inescapable conclusion is that Iran will not negotiate away its nuclear program. Nor will sanctions block its building a broad and deep weapons infrastructure. The inconvenient truth is that only military action like Israel’s 1981 attack on Saddam Hussein’s Osirak reactor in Iraq or its 2007 destruction of a Syrian reactor, designed and built by North Korea, can accomplish what is required. Time is terribly short, but a strike can still succeed.

Rendering inoperable the Natanz and Fordow uranium-enrichment installations and the Arak heavy-water production facility and reactor would be priorities. So, too, would be the little-noticed but critical uranium-conversion facility at Isfahan. An attack need not destroy all of Iran’s nuclear infrastructure, but by breaking key links in the nuclear-fuel cycle, it could set back its program by three to five years. The United States could do a thorough job of destruction, but Israel alone can do what’s necessary. Such action should be combined with vigorous American support for Iran’s opposition, aimed at regime change in Tehran.

Mr. Obama’s fascination with an Iranian nuclear deal always had an air of unreality. But by ignoring the strategic implications of such diplomacy, these talks have triggered a potential wave of nuclear programs. The president’s biggest legacy could be a thoroughly nuclear-weaponized Middle East.

John R. Bolton, a scholar at the American Enterprise Institute, was the United States ambassador to the United Nations from August 2005 to December 2006.

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Bowe Bergdahl, Deserter

Bergdahls-Dad-offers-Muslim-prayerFrontpage, by Robert Spencer, March 26, 2015:

U.S. soldier Bowe Bergdahl has been charged with desertion for leaving his unit in Afghanistan and joining up with the Taliban. It’s about time. After months of stonewalling as the evidence that Bergdahl was a deserter mounted ever higher, U.S. officials could ignore it no longer.

Much of that evidence has been known for years, and more of it came out last year, when Obama traded five seasoned, battle-hardened jihadis back to the Taliban in exchange for Bergdahl. Former infantry officer Nathan Bradley Bethea, who served with Bergdahl in Afghanistan, wrote in the Daily Beast that Bergdahl was “a deserter, and soldiers from his own unit died trying to track him down.” Refuting reports that Bergdahl got separated from his unit while on patrol, Bethea declared: “Make no mistake: Bergdahl did not ‘lag behind on a patrol,’ as was cited in news reports at the time. There was no patrol that night. Bergdahl was relieved from guard duty, and instead of going to sleep, he fled the outpost on foot. He deserted. I’ve talked to members of Bergdahl’s platoon—including the last Americans to see him before his capture. I’ve reviewed the relevant documents. That’s what happened.”

Bethea’s account is in full accord with the Taliban’s 2010 claim that Bergdahl had converted to Islam and was teaching bomb-making to its jihadists. There is no reason to take anything that Taliban spokesmen say at face value, but secret documents revealed Thursday afternoon corroborate the claim. According to one of these documents, dated August 23, 2012, “conditions for Bergdahl have greatly relaxed since the time of the escape. Bergdahl has converted to Islam and now describes himself as a mujahid. Bergdahl enjoys a modicum of freedom, and engages in target practice with the local mujahedeen, firing AK47s. Bergdahl is even allowed to carry a loaded gun on occasion. Bergdahl plays soccer with his guards and  bounds around the pitch like a mad man. He appears to be well and happy, and has a noticeable habit of laughing frequently and saying ‘Salaam’ repeatedly.”

The soldier’s father, Robert Bergdahl, also appears to be a convert to Islam, as during the ceremony with Obama in the Rose Garden announcing the exchange, he proclaimed: “Bismillah al-rahman al-rahim” – the phrase, “In the name of Allah, the compassionate, the merciful,” which is the heading of 113 of the Qur’an’s 114 chapters. (Journalist Neil Munro noted in the Daily Caller that “although Bergdahl quoted the Quran verse, the White House transcript did not translate it or even include the Islamic prayer. Instead, the transcript simply said Bergdahl spoke in the Pasho language, which is the language of the Pushtun tribe, which forms the vast majority of the Taliban force. In fact, ‘Bismillah ir-Rahman ir-Rahim’ is Arabic.” The lavishly-bearded Robert Bergdahl has also called for the release of the jihadists in Guantanamo and has implied that American troops are killing Afghan children in a tweet he concluded with “ameen,” the Arabic form of “amen.”)

What’s more, an Associated Press report stated that “a Pentagon investigation concluded in 2010 that Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl walked away from his unit, and after an initial flurry of searching the military decided not to exert extraordinary efforts to rescue him, according to a former senior defense official who was involved in the matter.” This official said that the evidence that Bergdahl had deserted was “incontrovertible.”

Fox News reported that Bergdahl — “both in his final stretch of active duty in Afghanistan and then, too, during his time when he lived among the Taliban — has been thoroughly investigated by the U.S. intelligence community and is the subject of ‘a major classified file.’ In conveying as much, the Defense Department source confirmed to Fox News that many within the intelligence community harbor serious outstanding concerns not only that Bergdahl may have been a deserter but that he may have been an active collaborator with the enemy.”

Former Army Sgt. Evan Buetow, who served with Bergdahl and was present the night he disappeared, says flatly: “Bergdahl is a deserter, and he’s not a hero. He needs to answer for what he did.” Even worse, Buetow recounted that days after Bergdahl vanished from the U.S. base, there were reports that he was in a nearby village looking for someone who spoke English, so that he could establish communications with the Taliban. Soon afterward, Buetow recalled, “IEDs started going off directly under the trucks. They were getting perfect hits every time. Their ambushes were very calculated, very methodical.”

Bergdahl knew where the trucks would be going and when; said Buetow: “We were incredibly worried” that the Taliban’s “prisoner of war” was passing this information on to his captors in order to help them place their bombs most effectively.

Fox News also reported that according to “sources who had debriefed two former members of Bergdahl’s unit,” the deserter “left behind a note the night he left base in which he expressed disillusionment with the Army and being an American and suggested that he wanted to renounce his American citizenship and go find the Taliban.” According to Colonel David Hunt, Bergdahl even “called his unit the day after he deserted to tell his unit he deserted.”

Barack Obama must have known all or some of this, or should have known it, when he announced the exchange of five Guantanamo detainees for Bergdahl. But he gave no hint of knowing it when he declared that the swap was “a reminder of America’s unwavering commitment to leave no man or woman in uniform behind on the battlefield.”

It was nonsense, and he must have known it. The desertion charge is a positive step, but there needs to be one more charge as well: treason.

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Published on Mar 26, 2015 by The Savage Nation

From the March 26, 2015 edition of “The Savage Nation” with Michael Savage: Terrorism expert and former PLO terrorist Walid Shoebat joins the program for an explosive interview to talk about Obama’s love affair with Islam, a potential nuclear weapons deal with Iran, ISIS and the Bowe Bergdahl story.

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‘Huge surge’ of ‘unscreened’ Muslims flooding U.S.

Muslims_Capitol (1)WND, by GREG COROMBOS, March 27, 2015:

Muslim immigration from dangerous nations is dramatically higher in recent years, and government assurances that immigrants are being properly screened is “a farce,” according to accomplished author and columnist Paul Sperry.

“It’s a huge surge under Obama. In the last three years, he’s averaged 100,000 new immigrants from Muslim nations a year. That is very alarming. It’s more than we’re importing both from Central America and Mexico combined. This is a big shift in immigration flows,” said Sperry, who is the author of “Infiltration: How Muslim Spies and Subversives Have Penetrated Washington” and co-author of “Muslim Mafia: Inside the Secret Underworld That’s Conspiring to Islamize America.”

“It’s really insane what we’re doing. No one’s really talking about it, but this mass immigration from Muslim countries poses a serious national security threat,” said Sperry, who is also a Hoover Institution media fellow and former Washington bureau chief of WND. Sperry frequently writes for the New York Post and Investor’s Business Daily.

The stated reason for the influx in recent years is the rise in refugees from war-torn nations like Syria and Iraq. The number of people accepted from Syria in particular baffles Sperry, who said there is a long standing policy of keeping Syrians at bay.

“Syria has always been on our terrorist list,” he said. “We have had very strict restrictions on Syrian immigration. Since Syria’s become a failed state, Obama’s increased the number of refugees. By the time he leaves office, we will be importing over 10,000 Syrians into this country. This is a concern because Iraq and Syria are now controlled by the Islamic State.”

The government insists the case of each refugee is carefully scrutinized before he or she is allowed into the U.S. But Sperry said that claim is laughable.

“At the top levels of the administration, DHS and so forth, they claim that these refugees are being vetted,” Sperry said. “But it’s a complete farce. We know that from testimony from the FBI officials who are in charge of that type of vetting process for terrorists coming in under visas and these refugee programs.”

Listen to the WND/Radio America interview with Paul Sperry

What has the FBI testimony shown?

“They admit, under oath, that they have no idea who these people are, and they can’t find out what type of backgrounds they have, criminal, terrorism or otherwise, because there is no vetting opportunities,” Sperry said. “You can’t vet somebody if you don’t have documentation, police records, etc.”

He said, “Of course, Iraq and Syria are now failed states and the police. There are no police records, so we are not vetting these folks.”

Sperry said it’s a huge gamble to let people from hostile nations enter the U.S. without any meaningful background check.

“We have no idea if they’re going to come into this country to escape terrorism or to carry out terrorism. We have no idea, and they admit as much. For all we know, they could be joining a sleeper cell here,” said Sperry, who noted that Obama has also greatly increased the number of Saudis in the U.S. on student visas.

According to Sperry, the U.S. should be feverishly dialing back its acceptance of Muslims from questionable nations. He said Western Europe is a glaring example of what happens when more scrutiny is not paid to who enters the country. Sperry cites recent terror attacks and plots in Paris, Copenhagen and Brussels as proof that liberal immigration standards and refusal to demand assimilation is a breeding ground for disaster.

“They opened the floodgates for North African Muslims,” he said. “Now they regret it, of course, but it’s too late. Europe regrets doing what we’re doing now. We’re the ones who are rolling out the welcome mat for Muslims from these hostile nations.”

While Sperry is quick to clarify that the U.S. contains none of the no-go zones for police that are found in some major European cities, he said political figures in the U.S. are naive to think that Muslims are not effecting major change in communities across the country, including some just a stone’s throw from the nation’s capital.

“That’s just nonsense on stilts,” he said. “These politicians need to get out and go out into some of the communities just in their backyard. Alexandria, Virginia, for example, Bailey’s Crossroad. They actually call that area Northern Virginia-stan.”

Two major Midwestern cities are also cause for major concern to Sperry.

“Then you have Dearbornistan, Michigan, and Minneapolis,” he said. “We’ve brought in so many Somalian refugees that they’ve turned Minneapolis into a terror hot spot. They are very belligerent, very aggressive about asserting their culture onto the West. The Minneapolis mayor is now wearing a hijab when she meets with Muslim leaders.”

Asserting the culture leads to a litany of other problems, Sperry said law enforcement has a tough time arresting Muslims in some areas for spousal abuse because it is allowed by the Quran if the wife is disobedient to her husband. He also said honor killings are on the rise, where fathers or brothers are permitted to murder Muslim girls for wearing Western clothing or dating a non-Muslim. Female genital mutilation is also a growing problem.

Sperry said it’s time to stop pretending America is not at war and take concrete measures to keep out people from suspect nations. He believes there’s an obvious place to start.

“They have a list of Muslim countries who are most hostile to the U.S. and the West,” Sperry said. “They rank them. We can start with those countries for a moratorium, putting some curbs on immigration from these countries.”

If the lack of solid background information were not enough, Sperry said the FBI is hopelessly overwhelmed in trying to vet immigrants already in the country, so opening the doors to hundreds of thousands more makes the nation even more vulnerable.

“Our FBI doesn’t even have the resources to get a handle on all of the ISIS/jihadist threat in the Muslim community,” he said. “Now we’re going to lay on top of that all of these new immigrants who are even potentially more radical on top of that threat matrix. I mean that’s just ridiculous.”

But is it fair to let no one in from those countries when surely a sizable percentage has no interest in attacking the U.S.? Sperry said there’s no other choice.

“We just don’t have the information,” he said. “The FBI admits they don’t have the information on the ground that they need, unless the FBI is going to go into these failed states, which isn’t going to happen. They do not have the police records, the police reports that they can make objective decisions on these folks coming in.

“It’s a pure sympathy play to let all these folks in on blind trust. We just cannot do that.”

Revealed: Jihadist Lessons at the Boston Marathon Bombers’ Mosque

islamic-society-of-boston-AP-640x480Breitbart, by ILYA FEOKTISTOV & CHARLES JACOBS, March 27, 2015

The Boston Marathon bombers’ mosque, the Islamic Society of Boston (ISB), employs an intensive radicalizing program aimed at Boston’s historically moderate Muslim community, especially at its youth. It’s called “Tarbiya,” which is Arabic for “growth and refinement.” It is not something that is practiced as part of classical mainstream Islam.

APT has obtained several curriculum documents created by ISB-affiliated groups, which describe exactly what is taught and when, with assignments detailed down to book and page number. We are making the most detailed and traceable of these documents availablehere and here. We will focus in this article on a particular Tarbiya program called “Young Muslims,” which was explicitly endorsed by Suhaib Webb, the Imam of the ISB’s mega-mosque in the Roxbury neighborhood of Boston. It lists books that all participants must read, and even includes page numbers for specific assignments (the document was formerly available at the program’s website, and can still be accessed through an archived version of the site).

The authors of many of these books are among the “Who’s Who” of radical Islamic ideologues. A lot of the books are available in the Boston Marathon bombers’ mosque’s library. Major focus is given to books by Hassan Al Banna, the founder of the Muslim Brotherhood; Said Qutb, the father of modern jihadism; Maulana Maududi, the father of political Islam on the Indian subcontinent; and Yusuf Qaradawi, the spiritual leader of the Muslim Brotherhood, whom the Anti-Defamation League calls the “Theologian of Terror.” Some of the books on the “must read” list have nothing to do with Islam, such as several books written by Howard Zinn, Noam Chomsky, and Michael Moore. Having young Muslims read a curriculum that includes far-left atheist authors of Jewish and Christian backgrounds shows that the goal of Tarbiya is not just to develop a Muslim’s spirituality, but also to develop within him a deep animosity to Western democracy.

The ISB and its political arm, the Muslim American Society (MAS), are very open about the program’s existence and even have websites dedicated to it. MAS teaches Tarbiya at each of its dozens of chapters across the United States, and the entire national Tarbiya program happens to be led by the Imam of the Boston Marathon bombers’ ISB Cambridge mosque, Basyouni Nehela. MAS describes Tarbiya in these terms:

MAS aspires to raise a generation of committed and disciplined Muslims who will spread the message of Islam and implement the Movement’s vision in all fields of Islamic work[.] … MAS delivers a rigorous educational curriculum to its current and potential members … The focus of Tarbiya is to groom members who… are equipped with the necessary knowledge, understanding, and skills to make a difference in the society by taking an active role, both individually and collectively, in the reform process that seeks the betterment of our community, our country, and the whole world.

The description of the program makes it seem like yet another benign new-agey spirituality and growth system. That is because, while it is openly advertised, the extremist and jihadist aspects of its curriculum are not – both for the sake of keeping this radical indoctrination from outside scrutiny and for the sake of keeping it, at first, from the Muslim youths who are thinking about joining it.

Indeed, a “Young Muslim” first entering the program will not be reading any extremist authors for a very long time. The first phase of the program is dedicated to completely legitimate religious learning. Participants read the Quran and other Islamic religious texts. They learn about the life of the Muslim prophet, Muhammad, and they study the importance of the Five Pillars of Islam: declaration of faith, prayer, charity, fasting, and pilgrimage.

But soon, those participants who show a high level of dedication, zeal, and religiosity, of willingness to internalize everything that has been taught to them, are told that simply praying and giving charity are not enough. At this next stage of Tarbiya, they are assigned books, such as Let Us Be Muslims by jihadist ideologue Maulana Maududi, who provides them with the core Islamist idea: Muslims need to be more than pious; they need to rule over all mankind:

Brothers in Islam! The Prayer, Fasting, Almsgiving, and Pilgrimage are so important that they are described as the pillars of Islam. They are not, however, like the worship rites in other religions. […]

These acts of worship have in fact been ordained to prepare us for a greater purpose and to train us for a greater duty… What exactly is that great ultimate purpose? Stated simply: the ultimate objective of Islam is to abolish the lordship of man over man and bring him under the rule of the One God. To stake everything you have – including your lives – to achieve this purpose is called Jihad.

Having thus channeled the zealous young Muslim’s sincere religious devotion into an extremist agenda, the third stage of Tarbiya indoctrination consists entirely of incitement to violent Jihad, hatred for America, and of Western civilization in general. It is in this stage that young Muslims study in detail the Islamist corollary to Mein Kampf or theCommunist Manifesto: Said Qutb’s Milestones, which outlines a road map to establishing a global Islamic State ruled by Sharia law. It is Said Qutb who inspired Osama Bin Laden. According to Qutb:

All Jewish and Christian societies today are also ignorant societies… Islam cannot accept any mixing with this ignorance… One should accept the Islamic law without any question and reject all other laws in any shape or form… The abolition of man-made laws cannot be achieved only through preaching… It must employ Jihad.

By the time a young Muslim Tarbiya participant reaches this phase, he has already bought in to all the indoctrination in the previous phases that brought him there. The books he studies in the third phase, such as To Be a Muslim by Lebanese Muslim Brotherhood leader Fathi Yakun tell him:

A Muslim must always worship Allah and wage jihad until death in order to reach his ultimate goal… Obedience for a Muslim means to obey every command and implement it whether in time of happiness or hardship, and whether one likes it or not… He will not act against the leader in agreed matters, and will be loyal to him in every action, regardless of his personal likes or dislikes… Dissociate yourself from every gathering or organization that opposes your ideological standpoint, especially when the Movement asks you to do so.

A key component of Tarbiya is not just the material taught, but the structure of the program, in which recruits are organized into intimate cells called “usras.” MAS is considered by Federal prosecutors to be the overt arm of the Muslim Brotherhood in America, and the program directly follows the methods developed by the Muslim Brotherhood’s founders in Egypt. Eric Trager, an expert on the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood with the Washington Institute for Near East Policy has lectured about the Brotherhood’s Tarbiya process in Egypt:

At the lowest level of the Brotherhood structure is what’s called an usra, or “family.” You can think of this as a cell. This is a group of five to eight Muslim Brothers. They meet weekly for about three hours. They discuss the Quran, religious texts, the Brotherhood’s curriculum, politics. They share their personal lives. The members of this group become a Muslim Brother’s best friends. The people that you work most closely with are in your usra. The usra is a mechanism through which the Brotherhood embeds your social relationships into the organization so that you’re less likely to disobey it due to peer pressure and you’re less likely to leave it because you’ll be leaving your best friends.

This is exactly how the MAS branch in Boston describes its usras:

The usra is an intensive, spiritually-focused, activism-oriented program that develops the individual and invites him or her to join hands with MAS and work for the sake of Islam as a central priority in life. There are weekly assignments prior to and following each usra. Each member is expected to spend approximately 3-6 hours a week on usra and usra-related activities (usra attendance [~ 2 hours], usra assignments [1-2 hrs], dawah work (example MSA work, MAS Youth work, or other Islamic work, etc) [3 hrs], social activities [2 hours /month].) Each usra generally contains around 5-7 members.

MAS demands that those entering its Tarbiya program be “willing to be committed to theusra and hold working for Islam as a central priority in life.” ISB Roxbury Imam Suhaib Webb defines the usra as: “the usra is you’re in the ocean swimming, you’re lost, your boat sunk and suddenly you see some people on the boat, you get there and they give you a blanket and a cup of soup, that’s the usra.” All of this makes leaving the MAS/ISB program extremely difficult. It also makes it extremely likely that if a young Muslim participant is encouraged by his usra leader to do something terrible for the sake of the movement, he will gladly comply, even if this means prison or death. The usra system of the Tarbiya program is less similar to a religious requirement than it is to the demands of a criminal enterprise. These methods used by MAS/ISB are much like the techniques that gangs and mafia groups use to recruit and maintain a death grip on their members.

We do not know who, if anyone, encouraged the Tsarnaev brothers to bomb the Boston Marathon. We think it was extremely unlikely that any ISB or MAS leader told them to do it and taught them how to make the bombs. The slow and steady work of the Muslim Brotherhood in America, referred to by Islamism experts as “the stealth or civilization jihad,” aims – not through violence, but through pressure and persuasion (“Dawa” in Arabic) – to gradually move Western Muslim youths into its camp. The ISB and MAS are experiencing success, probably beyond their expectations, in posing as moderates and becoming accepted into Boston civic society. This success includes positive coverage in the mainstream press, support from mainstream politicians, and access to new unsuspecting recruits within Boston’s traditionally moderate Muslim community. Why risk all of that with a bomb that only can set the effort back? The Tarbiya curriculum repeatedly states that the time for violent jihad has not yet come – much preparation work still needs to be done. The Muslim Brotherhood’s program will always have this fundamental problem: when you tell teenagers that something can be a good thing to do, but “not yet”– whether it be sex or alcohol or violent jihad– you will surely find that some will jump the gun.

* * * *

On the other hand… As he lay wounded and hiding inside a boat stored for the winter in a suburban Boston-area backyard on April 19th, 2013, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev penciled a confession on the 22-foot cruiser’s walls. Four days prior, he and his brother exploded twin homemade pressure cooker bombs at the 117th Boston Marathon, killing three and injuring 264. Less than 24 hours before Dzhokhar was eventually discovered by the boat owner, the Tsarnaev brothers ambushed and murdered MIT police officer Sean Collier, hijacked a Mercedes SUV, and engaged in a fierce 8-minute gun battle with cops before Dzhokhar drove the SUV over his brother, Tamerlan, and escaped. Tamerlan died shortly thereafter, but, as he waited for his inevitable capture or death, Dzhokhar took the time to list his grievances in detail. The jury at his currently ongoing trial saw the boat and the wall panel bearing Dzhokhar’s message:

“Our actions came with a message and that is la ilaha illalah [there is no god but Allah]. We are promised victory and we will surely get it. […]

“We will pursue this evil force to its own lands, invade its Western heartland, and struggle to overcome it until all the world shouts by the name of the Prophet and the teachings of Islam spread throughout the world. […]

“Know you are fighting men who look into the barrel of your gun and see heaven, now how can you compete with that. […]

“Regularly make the intention to go on jihad with the ambition to die as a martyr. You should be ready for this right now. […]

“We Muslims are one body, you hurt one you hurt us all. […]

“A Muslim has no relatives except those who share the belief in Allah. […]

“The ummah is beginning to rise/awaken [bullet hole] has awoken the Mujahideen.”

“To be true Muslims, we must be Mujahideen. We can no more sit back passively; we must try, actively, to change history, that is, wage Jihad.

Only the odd-number passages above were actually written by Dzhokhar Tsarnaev on the inside of the boat. The rest come from books taught as part of the Young Muslims Tarbiya program.

Muslims have lived in Boston since the early 20th century. Islam has existed for over 1,400 years. Yet Tarbiya did not exist until it was invented by the Muslim Brotherhood in the 1930s as a cultic innovation within the religion of Islam. This cult did not begin to affect Boston’s historically moderate Muslim community until the 1990s, with the creation of the Boston marathon bombers’ mosque and the takeover of many other local Muslim institutions.

The correlation between Dzhokhar Tsarnaev’s note in the boat and what is being taught to Boston’s Muslims through the ISB/MAS Tarbiya program is striking. These kinds of teachings, as APT board member and moderate Muslim Sheikh Ahmed Mansour says, put a bomb in a young Muslim’s heart. Unless the Tarbiya program is exposed and terminated, there will be others who will take the bombs in their hearts and recreate them in real life, just as the Tsarnaevs did on April 15th, 2013.

Charles Jacobs is president and Ilya Feoktistov is research director of Americans for Peace and Tolerance.

MUST READ: Robert Spencer’s Blogging the Qur’an: Sura 2, ‘The Cow,’ Verses 222-286

1A6A9599PJ Media, by Robert Spencer:

Do you want a guardian from Allah when you go to bed? Find out how below — but if you start any anal sex, the deal is off. This segment of the Qur’an’s second chapter says that right out.

My friend Jeff once told me that he had tried to read the Qur’an many times, but he “could never get through the damn ‘Cow.’” With this segment, we have.

One reason why it’s tough to get through is because “The Cow” is packed with legal regulations. Allah, according to Islamic theology the Qur’an’s sole speaker (although he refers to himself in the third person often enough), concerns himself in the latter part of “The Cow” primarily with various laws for marriage and divorce (vv. 222-242). He forbids intercourse during menstruation (v. 222).

In the next verse, he tells Muslims, “Your wives are a place of sowing of seed for you, so come to your place of cultivation however you wish” (v. 223), which some Muslims understand as prohibiting anal sex — so says Ibn Kathir. According to a hadith recorded by the Imam Muslim, considered by Muslims to be the second most reliable collector of hadith (after Bukhari) and others, the Jews are behind the revelation of this verse. “The Jews used to say that when one comes to one’s wife through the vagina, but being on her back, and she becomes pregnant, the child has a squint” (Sahih Muslim 3363) — or, according to other sources, is cross-eyed.

To refute this, this verse was revealed: “Your wives are a place of sowing of seed [tilth] for you, so come to your place of cultivation however you wish” (v. 223). Sayyid Qutb says that the use of the word “tilth” (Arabic حَرْثٌ), with its “connotations of tillage and production, is most fitting, in a context of fertility and procreation” — or, as Maududi puts it, Allah’s “purpose in the creation of women is not merely to provide men with recreation.” It is also to provide them with children.

Allah’s regulations for divorce emphasize regarding women that “men have a degree over them” (v. 228). This may be why men can divorce their wives simply by saying, “Talaq” — I divorce you — but women may not do this. Such an easy procedure leads to divorces in a fit of pique, followed by reconciliation — and the Qur’an anticipates this and attempts to head it off by stipulating that a husband who divorces his wife three times cannot reconcile with her until she marries another man and is in turn divorced by him: “And if he has divorced her [for the third time], then she is not lawful to him afterward until she marries a husband other than him” (v. 230). This has given rise to the phenomenon of “temporary husbands,” who marry and divorce thrice-divorced women at the behest of Islamic clerics even in our own day, so that these poor women can then return to their original husbands. This practice has, as one may imagine, given rise to abuses, and a hadith depicts Muhammad condemning it. Muslim clerics insist that the poor woman’s new marriage and divorce must be genuine before she can return to her original husband.

Allah then goes on to detail the arrangements men make for their wives in their wills (vv. 234, 240); those interested in the doctrine of abrogation will be interested in the fact that Ibn Kathir contends of v. 240 that “the majority of the scholars said that this Ayah (2:240) was abrogated by the Ayah (2:234).”

After that, it’s time to rake the Jews over the coals again. Allah in verses 243-260 refers to several Biblical stories, none in much detail. The Jews refuse to fight after having been commanded to do so (v. 246) and they rebel at the appointment of Saul as king (v. 247). If Allah had willed, the nations would have believed the prophets he sent to earth, but this was not his will, although his reasons are left unexplained (v. 253). It would have been interesting to know why he sent prophets while willing that they not be believed, but we’re not let in on the secret.

Then comes the Throne Verse (Ayat al-Kursi), v. 255. According to Islamic scholar Mahmoud Ayoub, this verse is “regarded by Muslims as one of the most excellent verses of the Qur’an. It has therefore played a very important role in Muslim piety.” The Prophet of Islam, Muhammad, is said to have agreed with a claim that this verse is so powerful that “whenever you go to your bed, recite the Verse of ‘Al-Kursi’ (2.255) for then a guardian from Allah will be guarding you, and Satan will not approach you till dawn” and with another about its being the “greatest verse in the Book of Allah.”

Qurtubi reports that “when the Throne Verse was revealed, every idol and king in the world fell prostrate and the crowns of kings fell off their heads,” and recounts a saying by Muhammad in which Allah tells Moses of the many blessings that people will receive if they recite the Throne Verse — another manifestation of the assumption that the People of the Book had at least some of the contents of the Qur’an, but perversely effaced them from their own Scriptures.

Immediately following that verse comes the Qur’an’s famous statement that “there is no compulsion in religion” (v. 256).

Muslim spokesmen in the West frequently quote that phrase to disprove the contention that Islam spread by the sword, or even to claim that Islam is a religion of peace. However, according to an early Muslim, Mujahid ibn Jabr, this verse was abrogated by Qur’an 9:29, in which the Muslims are commanded to fight against and subjugate the People of the Book. Others, however, according to the Islamic historian Tabari, say that the “no compulsion” verse was never abrogated, but was revealed precisely in reference to the People of the Book. They are not to be forced to accept Islam, but may practice their religions as long as they pay the jizya (poll-tax) and “feel themselves subdued” (9:29). No compulsion indeed.

Many see the “no compulsion” verse as contradicting the Islamic imperative to wage jihad against unbelievers, but actually there is no contradiction because the aim of jihad is not the forced conversion of non-Muslims, but their subjugation within the Islamic social order. Says Asad: “All Islamic jurists (fuqahd’), without any exception, hold that forcible conversion is under all circumstances null and void, and that any attempt at coercing a non-believer to accept the faith of Islam is a grievous sin: a verdict which disposes of the widespread fallacy that Islam places before the unbelievers the alternative of conversion or the sword.” Quite so: the choice, as laid out (according to a hadith) by Muhammad himself, is conversion, subjugation as dhimmis, or the sword: “Fight in the name of Allah and in the way of Allah. Fight against those who disbelieve in Allah. Make a holy war… When you meet your enemies who are polytheists, invite them to three courses of action. If they respond to any one of these you also accept it and withhold yourself from doing them any harm. Invite them to (accept) Islam; if they respond to you, accept it from them and desist from fighting against them….If they refuse to accept Islam, demand from them the Jizya. If they agree to pay, accept it from them and hold off your hands. If they refuse to pay the tax, seek Allah’s help and fight them.” (Sahih Muslim 4294)

Qutb accordingly denies that the “no compulsion” verse contradicts the imperative to fight until “religion is for Allah” (v. 193), saying that “Islam has not used force to impose its beliefs.” Rather, jihad’s “main objective has been the establishment of a stable society in which all citizens, including followers of other religious creeds, may live in peace and security” — although not with equality of rights before the law, as 9:29 emphasizes. For Qutb, that “stable society” is the “Islamic social order,” the establishment of which is a chief objective of jihad.

In this light, verses 256 and 193 go together without any trouble. Muslims must fight until “religion is for Allah,” but they don’t force anyone to accept Allah’s religion. They enforce subservience upon those who refuse to convert, such that many of them subsequently convert to Islam so as to escape the humiliating and discriminatory regulations of dhimmitude — but when they convert, they do so freely. Only at the end of the world will Jesus, the Prophet of Islam, return and Islamize the world, abolishing Christianity and thus the need for the jizya that is paid by the dhimmis. Muhammad is depicted in a hadith as saying: “‘By Him in Whose Hands my soul is, son of Mary (Jesus) will shortly descend amongst you people (Muslims) as a just ruler and will break the Cross and kill the pig and abolish the Jizya (a tax taken from the non-Muslims, who are in the protection, of the Muslim government). Then there will be abundance of money and no-body will accept charitable gifts.’” (Bukhari 3.34.425) Then religion will be “for Allah,” and there will be no further need for jihad.

After all that, Allah exhorts the believers to charitable giving, and condemns usury (vv. 275-281) — which is the foundation of the Islamic abhorrence of interest-based banking. He then stipulates, veering from subject to subject, that two women are equivalent to one man in giving testimony (v. 282). Muhammad is depicted as explaining, “This is because of the deficiency of a woman’s mind.” (Sahih Bukhari 3.48.826)

So much for “The Cow.”

Center for Security Policy sends A team to Canada’s Parliamentary committee on terrorism bill C51

csis

Vlad Tepes:

Also see:

OBAMA ADMINISTRATION OFFICIALLY ON EVERY SIDE OF EVERY MIDDLE EAST CONFLICT

obama-wut-AP-640x480Breitbart, by Ben Shapiro, March 26, 2015:

On Wednesday, the government of Saudi Arabia launched airstrikes against Iran-backed Houthis in Yemen, which has now collapsed into civil war. Egypt is set to join in the Saudi effort even as Saudi Arabia establishes a no-fly zone. Meanwhile, rebels claimed that Yemen’s president, Abdu Rabu Mansour Hadi, fled Aden in advance of their consolidation of power on the ground. And Iran, which has fomented the chaos in Yemen, has warned Saudi Arabia that it had taken a “dangerous step.”

The good news: In President Obama’s world, none of this is happening. It’s all Skittles and rainbows for the White House.

White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest insisted Wednesday that President Obama’s September 2014 characterization of Yemen as an anti-terror success story was perfectly accurate. Earnest told Jonathan Karl of ABC News, “The White House does continue to believe that a successful counter-terrorism strategy is one that will build up the capacity of the central government to have local fighters on the ground to take the fight to extremists in their own country.” Karl called the exchange “astounding.”

But Earnest wasn’t done. Ed Henry of Fox News incredulously asked, “The President said it’s a success. He was wrong, right? Why can’t you say he was wrong and we’re trying to fix it?”

Earnest answered, “We have put intense pressure on extremists inside of Yemen, and it has mitigated the threat that they have posed to the U.S. and the West.” Pressure, like calling the Houthis, who chant “Death to America, Death to Israel, a Curse on the Jews, and Victory to Islam,” a “legitimate political constituency.”

But it’s not like the White House is doing nothing about Yemen. Earnest explained the Obama administration’s powerful move for peace: “We would call on [the Houthis] to stop that instability and that violence and cooperate with this UN-led process to resolve the difference among all the sides.”

That solves that!

At the same moment the White House supports the Saudi airstrikes in Yemen, it acts as the air force for Iran in Iraq against ISIS. Beginning Wednesday, the U.S. launched airstrikes against ISIS in Tikrit, The Daily Beast noted that the airstrikes marked a shift in American policy, since “the American military has long insisted that it wouldn’t coordinate too closely with the Iranians, even as both forces fight a common enemy in Iraq: ISIS.” The Daily Beast reported some qualms from the Pentagon about “the implications of coming to the rescue of a failed Iranian-led effort.”

Meanwhile, the White House continues to negotiate a nuclear deal with the Iranians, even as the Iranians foment precisely the chaos in Yemen the White House opposes – or at least pretends to oppose. Secretary of State John Kerry, presumably while humming “Everything Is Awesome!” from The Lego Movie, said that the United States had no choice but to come to a deal with the Iranians, since if the United States were to “walk away from a plan that the rest of the world were to deem to be reasonable … the talks would collapse. Iran would have the ability to go right back spinning its centrifuges and enriching to the degree they want … and the sanctions will not hold.” This, of course, neglects the fact that the reason the sanctions will no longer hold is because the Obama administration has spent years undermining them. As for the deal itself, the Iranians now insist that no deal be reduced to writing, and that snap inspections of nuclear facilities play no role in the deal. The deal will reportedly be consummated with a pinky swear.

The shotgun strategy of diplomacy – if you fire at everyone, you’re bound to hit someone! – is the administration’s new “lead from behind.” Even Jeffrey Goldberg of The Atlantic, the Obama administration’s designated journalistic court Jew, was forced to briefly stop typing one-handed while gazing longingly at President Obama’s portrait to tweet, “Negotiating with the Iranians in Switzerland, bombing their allies in Yemen, bombing their enemies in Syria and Iraq. Makes sense.” (Minutes later, Goldberg went back to one-handed typing, tweeting, “People who blame mainly WH for current Middle East mess aren’t really focused on nature and history of Middle East mess.” Ah, well.)

Nearly every country in the Middle East is now at war, thanks in large part to the complete absence of any coherent policy from the world’s only superpower. And we are on every side of all of those wars. Iran and its associated forces are at war in Iraq (We support Iran in Iraq, but only after opposing Iran in Iraq.), Syria (Assad had to go until he didn’t.), Lebanon (We just took Hezbollah off the terrorist group list.), and Yemen (where we are okay with the Houthis, except when we support bombing them). Lebanon, Syria, and the Palestinians are at war with Israel. (We fund Israel’s Iron Dome, but rip them when they exercise their right to self-defense and cut off arms shipments mid-war, then castigate them as non-democratic for not negotiating with terrorists.) Egypt (where we supported the Muslim Brotherhood and then the coup against the Muslim Brotherhood and then opposed the regime that ousted the Muslim Brotherhood) is at war with Libya (where we ousted Muammar Qadaffi and then watched as the state turned into a terrorist playpen) and Yemen. Saudi Arabia (whom we oppose in their efforts to stop Iranian nukes) is at war with Yemen (where we are on the side of the Saudis) and in a proxy war with Iran. (We’re not sure.) Tunisia, Iraq, Libya, Afghanistan, and Syria are all in civil war. Now, there are reports that the Saudis and Jordanians and Egyptians are all seeking nuclear weapons not to fight Israel, but to counter Iran.

But at least President Obama has his Nobel Peace Prize. And his delusions.

Ben Shapiro is Senior Editor-At-Large of Breitbart News and author of the new book,The People vs. Barack Obama: The Criminal Case Against The Obama Administration (Threshold Editions, June 10, 2014). He is also Editor-in-Chief of TruthRevolt.org. Follow Ben Shapiro on Twitter @benshapiro.

Also see:

Presidential Race 2016 Candidate Profile – Ted Cruz, Republican

PresidentialRace2015Clarion Project, by Ryan Mauro, March 24, 2015:

The Presidential race for 2016 is gearing up and candidates are preparing themselves for the upcoming campaign. Senator Ted Cruz is the first to announce his bid for the Republican presidential nomination.

As each candidate announces their intention to run, Clarion Project will provide a summary of each candidate’s positions on issues relating to Islamic extremism, in order to help our readers make the most informed possible choice come voting day. Should there be any significant changes, we intend to update our readers on the positions of any given candidate.

As Clarion is a bipartisan organization, we will not be endorsing any party or any candidate. All information provided is intended as informative only and should not be taken as evidence of Clarion’s preference for any given candidate.

As Senator Ted Cruz is the first candidate to announce, a summary of his record on Islamic extremism is what follows:

Ted-Cruz-Inside-Pic-245x306GOP Presidential Candidate Senator Ted Cruz: Record on Islamist Extremism

Senator Ted Cruz announced his bid for the Republican presidential nomination on March 23, 2015.

The following is the Clarion Project’s compilation of Senator Cruz’s positions on Islamist extremism. It will be updated as the campaign develops.

Relevant Experience

Single-term Republican Senator from Texas (2012-Current)

  • Serves on Senate Committee on Armed Services:
    • Subcommittee on Emerging Threats and Capabilities
    • Subcommittee on Strategic Forces
    • Subcommittee on Seapower

Islamist Groups in America

Iran

Iraq and ISIS

  • The U.S. should not deploy ground troops to Iraq to fight ISIS if they must rely on the Iraqi government or Iran-linked militias for security.
  • The U.S. should first increase support for the Kurdish Peshmerga instead of sending additional ground troops to Iraq.
  • The citizenships of Americans that have joined terrorist groups like ISIS overseas should be revoked so they cannot reenter the country or receive constitutional protections.

Muslim Brotherhood & Egypt

  • The U.S. should have successfully pressured Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak to oversee a democratic transition but should not have supported his removal because he was an ally.
  • Criticism of his human rights abuses was acceptable but “[President Obama] went further than that to topple him and replace him with the Muslim Brotherhood, whose interest and animus was rabidly anti-American.”
  • The U.S. should have demanded concessions from the Muslim Brotherhood-led government of Egypt in return for pledges of additional foreign aid.
  • He said the U.S. should have severed aid to Egypt once the protests against the Muslim Brotherhood began. The lack of support for the opposition made the U.S. “in both perception and reality — entrenched as the partner of a repressive, Islamist regime and the enemy of the secular, pro-democracy opposition,” he wrote.
  • The Egyptian military’s popularly-supported overthrow of the Muslim Brotherhood is a “coup” and all U.S. aid to Egypt should have been suspended. Sen. Cruz’s position was even more hostile to the new Egyptian military’s overthrow of the Brotherhood than that of the Obama Administration.
  • The Egyptian military’s crackdown on the Muslim Brotherhoodis responsible for provoking the Islamist group into violence and attacking Coptic Christians.
  • The U.S. should only provide aid to Egypt if it advances the creation of a secular and inclusive government that honors the peace treaty with Israel.
  • He praised Egyptian President El-Sisi for calling on the Muslim world to stand against terrorists who act in the name of Islam.

Syria

  • The U.S. should have swiftly called for the removal of Syrian President Bashar Assad in 2011 “when there was a unified, peaceful and secular opposition to him.” However, on March 24, 2015, Cruz appeared to disavow a policy supporting Assad’s removal by saying he’s a “monster” but does not “pose a clear and present danger to America.”
  • The U.S. must not arm Syrian rebels because of the inability to determine which rebels are a threat to the West and the likelihood that U.S. supplies will fall into the hands of terrorists.
  • The U.S. must take the lead in developing a plan to “go in” and eliminate Syrian stockpiles of weapons of mass destruction to prevent them from falling into the hands of terrorists. This was stated in June 2013.
  • In September 2013, he opposed the Obama Administration’s proposal for airstrikes on Syrian WMD capabilities and other regime targets after it ignored U.S. warnings against using chemical weapons in the civil war.

WAR Declared! Beck, Rove, Norquist, GOP

Glenn_Beck10-620x338

Breitbart, March 24, 2015:

(THE UNITED WEST) An all out knock down drag out media war has broken out between Glenn Beck vs. Grover Norquist and Karl Rove and the GOP. Glenn has threatened to revoke his NRA membership if Grover Norquist, a Muslim Brotherhood agent, is re-elected to the NRA board. Karl Rove, a 30 year friend and mentor to Norquist, unleashed a verbal attack on Bill O’Reilly. Beck replied, with the following, “If you want to rumble baby, c’mon,” and added, “You guy’s have the spine of a worm, the ethics of whores, and the integrity of pirates, with my apologies to worms, whores and pirates.”

Also see:

The Message Glenn Beck Got in the Middle of His Special on Grover Norquist That Will Affect the Rest of the Week (theblaze.com)

UPDATE March 26, 9:19 a.m. ET: Glenn Beck announced on his radio program that Grover Norquist would be on his television show this afternoon. He said his producer received an email saying Norquist would come on, and their email Wednesday did not mean he was backing out.

Beck described the email chain as “almost psychotic” and “bizarre,” adding that they have “never had this problem setting up a guest before.” But he reiterated his pledge to make his television program free that afternoon to anyone who wants to watch Norquist’s rebuttal.

Glenn Beck on Wednesday presented an hour-long special on Grover Norquist, the president of Americans for Tax Reform, who he has described as an “agent of influence” for radical Islamists. In the middle of the show, Beck revealed an interesting twist involving Norquist’s previous commitment to come on the show to answer the charges. Norquist cancelled, saying Beck made the accusations in front of more than 7 million people on radio, which listeners can tune into for free, but invited Norquist to defend himself on a show that requires a subscription.

“If you have a problem with [my TV show] being paid, I will make this episode free,” Beck promised. “It will be free tomorrow to anyone who wants to hear your response.”

The email from Norquist’s representative also accused Beck of “never checking” any of his facts and “never reaching out” to Norquist’s team for a “reality check,” but Beck called both allegations “absolutely untrue.”

“I knew this would happen,” Beck said. “Grover has no interest in coming on the show.”

You can read the complete letter from Norquist’s representative, below:

No conservative should have to pay Glenn Beck to hear a grown up response to Frank Gaffney’s nonsense. Two weeks ago, March 11, Glenn had Frank Gaffney on his radio show for a lengthy interview in front of an audience of seven million Americans. Uncritically accepting Gaffney’s ten to fifteen year old nonsense, Glenn kept saying Grover was a “dangerous” and “bad” man. On the free public airwaves in front of seven million people, Glenn repeated Gaffney’s long discredited nonsense over the course of several shows. Never checking anything. Never reaching out to us for a reality check. And then, after repeating stuff from Gaffney over and over on the public airwaves, you invite Grover to a paid, subscription-only show with a different, and much smaller, audience. If you are now interested in the facts that dozens of reporters and most conservative leaders already know, the best way to proceed would be to hash through Gaffney’s attacks in front of the audience where Glenn gave Gaffney plenty of time to present them. If you are serious about fact checking Gaffney’s material, contact me to find a time to do something on the radio show, the same venue where Gaffney told his conspiracy theory.

Beck said the hour-long special “isn’t personal,” but the result of research into Norquist’s connections to radical Islamists.

“He is a power player who has managed to use his influence to evade any real scrutiny over his dangerous connections,” Beck said. “He has a long list of connections with radical Islamic organizations, and in some cases, actual terrorists. … I don’t know the man at all. I’m not going to try to figure out why he’s doing this. I don’t know. … [But] this is about national security. This is a danger to you, your family and the republic.”

Beck began by highlighting Norquist’s influence within the GOP and his close relationship with Karl Rove, whose organization Crossroads GPS reportedly gave Americans for Tax Reform $26.4 million in 2012 for “social welfare.”

“What other alliances is he making?” Beck asked. “Let me show you some people he’s been working with and crossing paths with.”

Beck introduced his audience to Abdurahman Alamoudi, who allegedly raised money for Al Qaeda in the United States and is serving a 23-year prison sentence on terrorism charges. Alamoudi was recorded saying that outside of the United States, it is acceptable to say “Oh Allah, destroy America,” but once inside the “mission” is to “change” America from within. Beck said Alamoudi donated at least $20,000 to the Islamic Free Market Institute, which Norquist co-founded.

Beck also spoke about Sami al-Arian, a former college professor in Florida who plead guilty to supporting a terrorist organization and was recently deported by the Obama administration. He was quoted saying, “Let us damn America, let us damn Israel, let us damn them and their allies until death.” Beck said Norquist worked with al-Arian to fight against the use of secret evidence.

“I don’t know what Grover’s motivations are for working with people that range from Muslim Brotherhood sympathizers all the way to full-blown terrorists. It can only be one of two things. Either he is the most unlucky and naive guy … and I hope it’s that, because the only other option is that he strongly agrees enough with the Muslim Brotherhood’s mission, or they’re just paying him enough cash to subvert America.”

“Either way, somebody with this much power inside the Republican Party and inside the NRA with these connections is absolutely unacceptable,” Beck continued. “No person with any shred of integrity whatsoever would be within the same zip code of some of these people, let alone at the same office or exchanging money with them. And so far, the explanations given for the connections are completely unacceptable as well.”

Beck discusses Norquist’s connections more in depth in the video below.

Glenn Beck and Grover Norquist Finally Meet for On-Air Battle Over Alleged Ties to Radical Islamists: ‘Not True’

Frank Gaffney dissects the interview here: 

Congress needs a strategy to defeat both violent and cultural jihad

jihad2National Review, by Newt Gingrich, March 26, 2015:

On Tuesday, the House Committee on Homeland Security, under the leadership of Chairman Michael McCaul, held the first of a series of very important hearings on the threat of radical Islamism.

As I told the committee in my testimony, it is vital that the United States Congress undertake a thorough, no-holds-barred review of the long, global war in which we are now engaged with radical Islamists. This review will require a number of committees to coordinate, since it will have to include Intelligence, Armed Services, Foreign Affairs, Judiciary, and Homeland Security at a minimum.

There are three key, sobering observations about where we are today which should force this thorough, no-holds-barred review of our situation.

These three points — which are backed up by the facts — suggest the United States is drifting into a crisis that could challenge our very survival.

First, it is the case that after 35 years of conflict dating back to the Iranian seizure of the American embassy in Tehran and the ensuing hostage crisis, the United States and its allies are losing the long, global war with radical Islamists.

We are losing to both the violent jihad and to the cultural jihad.

The violent jihad has shown itself recently in Paris, Australia, Tunisia, Syria, Iraq, Libya, Egypt, Gaza, Nigeria, Somalia, Afghanistan, and Yemen, to name just some of the most prominent areas of violence.

Cultural jihad is more insidious and in many ways more dangerous. It strikes at our very ability to think and to have an honest dialogue about the steps necessary for our survival. Cultural jihad is winning when the Department of Defense describes a terrorist attack at Fort Hood as “workplace violence.” Cultural jihad is winning when the president refers to “random” killings in Paris when they were clearly the actions of Islamist terrorists and targeted against specific groups. Cultural jihad is winning when the administration censors training documents and lecturers according to “sensitivity” so that they cannot describe radical Islamists with any reference to the religious ideology which is the primary bond that unites them.

In the 14 years since the 9/11 attacks, we have gone a long way down the road of intellectually and morally disarming in order to appease the cultural jihadists, who are increasingly aggressive in asserting their right to define how the rest of us think and talk.

Second, it is the case that, in an extraordinarily dangerous pattern, our intelligence system has been methodically limited and manipulated to sustain false narratives while suppressing or rejecting facts and analysis about those who would kill us.

For example, there is clear evidence the American people have been given remarkably misleading analysis about al-Qaeda based on a very limited translation and publication of about 24 of the 1.5 million documents captured in the Bin Laden raid. A number of outside analysts have suggested that the selective release of a small number of documents was designed to make the case that al-Qaeda was weaker. These outside analysts assert that a broader reading of more documents would indicate al-Qaeda was doubling in size when our government claimed it was getting weaker — an analysis also supported by obvious empirical facts on the ground. Furthermore, there has been what could only be deliberate foot-dragging in exploiting this extraordinary cache of material.

Both Lieutenant General Mike Flynn, the former head of the Defense Intelligence Agency, and Colonel Derek Harvey, a leading analyst of terrorism, have described the deliberately misleading and restricted access to the Bin Laden documents.

A number of intelligence operatives have described censorship from above designed to make sure that intelligence which undermines the official narrative simply does not see the light of day.

Congress should explore legislation which would make it illegal to instruct intelligence personnel to falsify information or analysis. Basing American security policy on politically defined distortions of reality is a very dangerous habit which could someday lead to a devastating defeat. Congress has an obligation to ensure the American people are learning the truth and have an opportunity to debate potential policies in a fact-based environment.

Third, it is the case that our political elites have refused to define our enemies. Their willful ignorance has made it impossible to develop an effective strategy to defeat those who would destroy our civilization.

For example, the president’s own press secretary engages in verbal gymnastics to avoid identifying the perpetrators of violence as radical Islamists. Josh Earnest said that such labels do not “accurately” describe our enemies and that to use such a label “legitimizes” them.

This is Orwellian double-speak. The radical Islamists do not need to be delegitimized. They need to be defeated. We cannot defeat what we cannot name.

There has been a desperate desire among our elites to focus on the act of terrorism rather than the motivation behind those acts. There has been a deep desire to avoid the cultural and religious motivations behind the jihadists’ actions. There is an amazing hostility to any effort to study or teach the history of these patterns going back to the seventh century.

Because our elites refuse to look at the religious and historic motivations and patterns which drive our opponents, we are responding the same way to attack after attack on our way of life without any regard for learning about what really motivates our attackers. Only once we learn what drives and informs our opponents will we not repeat the same wrong response tactics, Groundhog Day–like, and finally start to win this long war.

Currently each new event, each new group, each new pattern is treated as though it’s an isolated phenomenon — as if it’s not part of a larger struggle with a long history and deep roots in patterns that are 1,400 years old.

There is a passion for narrowing and localizing actions. The early focus was al-Qaeda. Then it was the Taliban. Now it is the Islamic State. It is beginning to be Boko Haram. As long as the elites can keep treating each new eruption as a freestanding phenomenon, they can avoid having to recognize that this is a global, worldwide movement that is decentralized but not disordered.

There are ties between Minneapolis and Mogadishu. There are ties between London, Paris, and the Islamic State. Al-Qaeda exists in many forms and under many names. We are confronted by worldwide recruiting on the Internet, with Islamists reaching out to people we would never have imagined were vulnerable to that kind of appeal.

We have been refusing to apply the insights and lessons of history, but our enemies have been very willing to study, learn, rethink, and evolve.

The cultural jihadists have learned our language and our principles — freedom of speech, freedom of religion, tolerance — and they apply them to defeat us without believing in them themselves. We blindly play their game on their terms, and don’t even think about how absurd it is for people who accept no church, no synagogue, no temple in their heartland to come into our society and define multicultural sensitivity totally to their advantage — meaning, in essence, that we cannot criticize their ideas.

Our elites have been morally and intellectually disarmed by their own unwillingness to look at both the immediate history of the first 35 years of the global war with radical Islamists and then to look deeper into the roots of the ideology and the military-political system our enemies draw upon as their guide to waging both physical and cultural warfare.

One of the great threats to American independence is the steady growth of foreign money pouring into our intellectual and political systems to influence our thinking and limit our options for action. Congress needs to adopt new laws to protect the United States from the kind of foreign influences which are growing in size and boldness.

Sun Tzu, in The Art of War, written 500 years before Christ, warned that “all warfare is based on deception.” We are currently in a period where our enemies are deceiving us and our elites are actively deceiving themselves — and us. The deception and dishonesty of our elites is not accidental or uninformed. It is deliberate and willful. The flow of foreign money and foreign influence is a significant part of that pattern of deception.

We must clearly define our enemies before we can begin to develop strategies to defeat them.

We have lost 35 years since this war began.

We are weaker and our enemies are stronger.

Congress has a duty to pursue the truth and to think through the strategies needed and the structures which will be needed to implement those strategies.

— Newt Gingrich was speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives from 1995 to 1999.

***

USHR08 Committee on Homeland Security House naming Islamic terrorism

Published on Mar 26, 2015 by Kenneth Sikorski

This took place on Tuesday, March 24, 2015 before a congressional meeting for Homeland Security on Islamic terrorism.

***

More on that hearing here:

Obama Cites Ayatollah’s Fatwa on Road to Nuclear War

354x199xobama-iran2Frontpage, by Raymond Ibrahim, March 26, 2015:

As Iran continues edging closer to developing nuclear weapons—a major threat to the entire Mideast region, especially longstanding U.S. ally Israel—U.S. President Obama has come to the aid of the Islamic Republic, by citing an Islamic fatwa no less. In a video recording posted on the White House’s website, Obama said, “Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei has issued a fatwa against the development of nuclear weapons, and President Rouhani has said that Iran would never develop a nuclear weapon.”

This is the same Rouhani who, after recently showcasing Iran’s newly developed missiles, described his nation’s diplomatic talks with the U.S. as an active “jihad”: “Our negotiations with the world powers are a source of national pride. Yesterday [during the Iran-Iraq War], your brave generals stood against the enemy on the battlefield and defended their country. Today, your diplomatic generals are defending [our nation] in the field of diplomacy–this, too, is jihad.”

Other administration officials—such as Secretary of State John Kerry and Deputy National Security Adviser Ben Rhodes—have previously referred to the ayatollah’s reported fatwa in the context of the ongoing nuclear negotiations with Iran.

The Obama administration’s citation of this fatwa is utterly wrongheaded on many levels.

First, the Islamic doctrine of taqiyya permits Muslims to deceive non-Muslims. Islamic prophet Muhammad himself regularly lied to his infidel enemies, often resulting in their murder (such as the case of Ka‘b ibn Ashraf). He also proclaimed that lying was permissible in three contexts, one being war. Moreover, throughout the centuries and due to historic circumstances (discussed here), taqiyya became second nature to the Shia—the sect currently ruling Iran.

Then there is the fact that Islamic law takes circumstance into account. When Muhammad was weak and outnumbered in Mecca, he preached peace and tolerance (hence why Meccan Suras appear peaceful); when he became strong in Medina, he preached war and went on the offensive (hence why Medinan Suras are violent and intolerant). This dichotomy—preach peace when weak, wage war when strong—has been Islamic modus operandi for centuries.

Speaking of fatwas, Dr. Yusuf Burhami, a prominent Islamic cleric in Egypt, recently said that destroying churches in Egypt is permissible if not advisable—but not if doing so prompts Western infidels to intervene and occupy Egypt, which they could do “because the condition of Muslims in the current era is well known to the nations of the world—they are weak.” Burhami further added that circumstance is everything, “just as the prophet allowed the Jews to remain in Khaibar after he opened [conquered] it, once Muslims grew in strength and number, [second caliph] Omar al-Khattab drove them out according to the prophet’s command, ‘Drive out the Jews and Christians from the Peninsula.’”

And who can forget Yasser Arafat’s reference to Muhammad’s Hudaybiya pact? In 1994, soon after negotiating a peace treaty criticized as conceding too much to Israel, Arafat addressed an assembly of Muslims and said: “I see this agreement as being no more than the agreement signed between our Prophet Muhammad and the [infidel] Quraysh in Mecca.” In other words, like Muhammad, Arafat gave his word only to annul it once his ranks became strong enough to go on the offensive.

In short, it’s all very standard for Islamic leaders to say they are pursuing nuclear energy for peaceful purposes while they are weaker than their infidel foes—as Iran is today—but once they acquire nukes the jihad can resume in earnest.

Then there is the fact that Shia theology is rife with apocalyptic aspirations. An August 2007 report compiled by the Congressional Research Service said: “Ahmadinejad [previous president of Iran] believes his mission is to prepare for the return of the 12th ‘Hidden’ Imam, whose return from occultation [i.e., “hiding”] would, according to Twelver Shi’ite doctrine, be accompanied by the establishment of Islam as the global religion.”

Like other Iranians, Ahmadinejad cited the eschatological (and canonical) hadith wherein Muhammad said: “The Hour [Judgment Day] will not come until the Muslims fight the Jews and until the Jews hide behind the trees and rocks and the trees and rocks will say, ‘O Muslim, O Servant of God! Here are the Jews! Come and kill them!”

Indeed, during a recent speech, supreme leader Khamenei—whose fatwa Obama is now citing—boasted about Iran’s uranium enrichment, even as his military commanders shouted, “Allah Akbar. Khamenei is the leader. Death to the enemies of the leadership. Death to America. Death to England. Death to hypocrites. Death to Israel.”

Yet despite all this—despite the fact that Islamic doctrine mandates lying to infidels; despite the fact that the Shia—Iran’s leadership—have perfected taqiyya into an art; despite the fact that Islamic law holds that Muslims should preach peace when weak, war when strong; despite the fact that Iranian leadership openly boasts that its nuclear negotiations are a “jihad” against the infidel; despite the fact that Iran has previously been exposed developing uranium enrichments suitable for nuclear warheads—here is Obama and his administration relying on the “word” of the ayatollah of Iran.